Saturated fats are a major enemy of the patient who suffers from adult-onset diabetes. Consumption of too many unhealthy fats not only helps lead to the onset of diabetes in the first place, but it can create a proliferation of symptoms when taken to extreme levels. Luckily, the fats contained in most nuts are unsaturated and can actually improve health through the nutrients they offer.
First, nuts can help to lower bad cholesterol (LDL) while raising good cholesterol (HDL). This has positive implications for cardiovascular health, which can be negatively affected by the onset of diabetes. Nuts also generally contain a healthy dose of vitamin E, which helps inhibit the buildup of arterial plaque. By eliminating plaque buildup, this nutrient helps the overall blood flow.
Most importantly, many types of nuts (especially walnuts) are high in omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s are known for their cardiovascular benefits. Not only can they assist in the lowering of cholesterol, but they can also prevent symptoms of heart disease. Omega-3s are believed to be one of the key components in effective prevention and management of type 2 diabetes.
Nuts are also a major source of dietary fibers. Like many of the other nutrients associated with various types of nuts, dietary fibers can help in the regulation of blood sugar and the management of healthy cholesterol levels. Dietary fiber can also help to manage the digestive system, maintaining regular metabolic and digestive rates and thereby promoting weight loss. Fiber consumption is also believed to lead to decreased hunger, so a handful of nuts may feel like a much more filling snack than a less healthy snack of similar portion size.
Consumption of nuts can help to improve the circulatory, cardiovascular, metabolic and digestive systems due to a host of nutrients, fibers, and healthy unsaturated fats. This does not mean that consumption of heavy quantities will not still lead to weight gain; this is a risk with any food product. On the plus side, since the fiber content in nuts can lead them to feel more filling than they actually are, they make a great snack for those seeking to limit their overall food intake. This can help promote weight loss, which is vital to the prevention and/or management of type 2 diabetes.